I can’t even count how many times I have heard, and how many times I have said something along the lines of: I’m such a bad mom. I totally failed as a mom. Mom fail.
I think it’s crazy the expectations we put on ourselves as moms. To be the best all the time. To make healthy appealing meals 3 times a day. To keep the house clean. To volunteer here and there. To make sure our kids are obeying, being respectful, learning to serve. And on and on the list goes. And then when we miss the mark (the mark that we have set for ourselves) we allow ourselves to get totally down, discouraged and feel like complete and utter failures.
There are worse moms than you! Ha! That is not really my point, although I am totally positive it is true.
I am leaving Monday morning to go to a conference in Georgia for 4 days. I get to go and be with other creative, Christian women and share my heart and my passion for raising godly kids in a super ungodly world. I am so incredibly honored to have the chance to speak and very excited to be going. But somehow, guilt manages to creep in…just like it always does. It starts me worrying about what might happen when I’m gone and wondering if I am doing the right thing.
I know I am doing the right thing, because being able to speak to other women about raising intentional kids is what drives me. And I could not be more excited.
But it still reminds me of this vicious cycle. The mommy guilt? I don’t think you ever get to a point where you are going to never feel it again. And I don’t think it matters how old your kids are. It comes back over and over again. When they are babies, it’s the guilt over letting them cry it out. Right? When they are toddlers it could be them falling and bumping their head on something you should have moved. When they are older it’s the guilt over not spending enough quality time, or being too harsh, or maybe not harsh enough. It’s just not a good feeling to have. And it is not how God intended for us to feel.
Here’s the thing. We need to realize the standards that have been set up by God when it comes to parenting. Those are the things we need to be focusing on. If we start feeling guilty because we have not been disciplining consistently, or because we have not been focused on our relationship with God personally, or we have been skipping church or Bible study…then we need to realize where we’ve fallen short and then fix it. And then we need to move on. If we start feeling guilty because we have not given our kids the amount of vegetables that that darn pyramid tells us about, or if we are going out with friends one night instead of sitting home every night, or if we haven’t decorated their room like the rooms we see on pinterest? We have got to just get over it and move on.
Stop being guilty about the things we don’t need to feel guilty about. And start focusing on the things that we need to do to raise our kids to be godly, smart, sensitive to people’s needs, servants, and hard workers.
It’s all about focus, people. Focus on the things that really matter.
So when that mommy guilt comes at you over and over again? Stop yourself. Ask if it is something that God has set up as necessary or man has set up as necessary. Don’t waste your time trying to live up to someone else’s standards. Do take your time to live up to the standards that God has set for you. And that guilt? Kick it out.
It’s not doing you any good. And ain’t nobody got time for that.